The restaurant business is tough.
Kitchens, the equipment needed, dining rooms, furniture, bathrooms, parking - cost a load of money.
Being a restauranteur is then more suited to experts in cashflow than to creative, innovative, food preparing specialists.
But a new business model innovation may just be the key to changing all of that.
Ghost kitchens are a growing international foodie trend.
'A ghost kitchen is a professional food preparation and cooking facility, set up usually in a huge warehouse, for the preparation of delivery-only meals.
A ghost kitchen contains the kitchen equipment and facilities needed for the preparation of restaurant meals, but has no dining area for walk-in customers.
Restaurants that use ghost kitchens may have a different physical location for walk-in customers, or may be a delivery-only ghost restaurant.' - via Wikipedia
Post-pandemic, the ghost kitchen business model is almost certainly going to offer emerging and established restaurant brands the flexibility and low-cost operating structure that will allow them to focus on the food experience, rather than wrangling with landlords and the servicing of debt.
One particular ghost kitchen business, Reef Technologies, is fine-tuning the model that will allow them at some future stage to list there business at a massive multiple because of the value that they're leveraging.
'Reef Technologies was started in June 2019 in Miami, using parking lots and garages. Today it has some 4,500 parking sites across the country where it is installing mobile pods — roughly the size of shipping containers — that it calls kitchen vessels. The same space might house cooks preparing delivery orders from several restaurants, whether the food is Indian, Mexican, Italian or burgers.
Reef has three modular kitchens up and running in New York City. It expects to more than double that by the end of the year, and hopes to get its nationwide total to 300.' - via
A combination of technologies such as ghost kitchens and delivery apps is allowing entrepreneurs the freedom to focus on what they do best, without the hassle of committing to the capital outlay that a traditional restaurant demands.
That's not to suggest that the classic restaurant model is set to go extinct, but rather that this model, as an option, just allow wider future access to the industry.